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Solar Panels


Collecting Solar Energy

Properties that enjoy a store of hot water (be it open vented, unvented or Thermal Store) can capitalise on the most natural resource available on the planet - Solar Energy.

Solar energy may be harvested in several ways. Light can be converted to electricity using Photovoltaic Panels (PV). Radiant energy (heat) can be captured using Flat Panel and Evacuated Tube technology - also referred to as 'wet' systems because fluid is used to transport the heat.

To a certain degree some 'Ground Source' energy can be attributed to the effect of the sun warming the ground, as could the warmth in the air which is extracted by 'Air Source' recovery pumps, or warmth in water extracted with 'Water Source' pumps.

The following sections relate to 'wet panel' systems that work in collaboration with water cylinders equipped with a solar coil and Solar Thermal Stores.

One of the most common uses for solar energy is as a heat source for domestic hot water (DHW). Radiant solar energy is 'collected' typically by panels mounted in optimal position where sunlight is most abundant. Fluid (which is often a mixture including Ethylene Glycol as an antifreeze) is heated by radiation from the sun while passing through the panel and pumped to a cylinder in the dwelling where the energy is imparted to a volume of stored water via a heat exchanger. Fluid that has delivered its heat circulates back through the collector panel where it is re-heated and the process continues.

The cylinder or vessel into which the 'solar energy' is deposited can be one of the following fitted with a solar coil -

  1. An open vented 'gravity type' hot water cylinder (Sunspeed Solar , Multicoil Vented Solar , Stainless Lite Vented Solar)
  2. Un unvented type mains pressure hot water cylinder (Stainless Lite Unvented Solar)
  3. A Thermal Store used to provide mains pressure hot water, (Torrent Multifuel Solar , Pulsacoil Solar , Solar Thermal Store)
  4. To a Thermal Store as a 'pre-heater' vessel for the DHW on a Combination Boiler. (see Torrent RE for schematic)

Solar collectors are often used in conjunction with other heat sources (such as boiler, electric immersion heaters, wood burner, AGA etc). Thermal Stores lend themselves to configuring multiple heat sources of any type well.

  Worcester Vaillant  

Worcester Greenskies Solar Collectors

Worcester offers two types of solar water heating collectors evacuated tube and flat panel. They do not rely on high temperatures or direct sunlight to work, so it even works in cloudy weather.

Vaillant GeoTHERM Solar Collector panels.

The auroTHERM solar collectors have been designed to give maximum energy absorption and are easy to install in various applications. Collectors work on diffused solar radiation as well as direct sunlight and will even generate small amounts of energy on partially cloudy days.


Worcester ground source heat pumps

Vaillant ground source heat pumps



Worcester Bosch Solar Panels

Vaillant Solar Panels







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